The Red Cross declared on Sunday that the conflict in Syria can be considered a civil war, the Associated Press reports, confirming what some U.S. lawmakers have urged the Obama administration to acknowledge.
International humanitarian law will now be in effect throughout the country, which allows all parties involved to lawfully use force to achieve their aims and will inform war crimes prosecutions in the future, the AP reports.
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., ranking member of the Armed Services Committee, has urged U.S. action in Syria for months now, arguing long prior to the Red Cross' declaration that the conflict had escalated to a civil war.
"The longer this conflict drags on, the more radicalized it becomes, and the more it turns into a sectarian civil war with an escalating spiral of violence that Syrians alone cannot stop," he said in a speech to the American Enterprise Institute in June.
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